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A new study in the Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials tested various dental restorative CAD/CAM composites and has found that lithium disilicate glass ceramic had the highest flexural strength, but all the materials were found to be satisfactory in terms of their mechanical and optical properties.
Overall, the German researchers found that CAD/CAM composites presented moderate flexural strength and high translucency, as well as exhibited antagonist-friendly behavior. On the materials side, they reported that glass ceramic demonstrated the most favorable discoloration rate and lowest two-body wear.
“From the clinical point of view and in contrast to common clinical opinions, all tested CAD/CAM composites showed satisfactory mechanical and optical properties,” wrote lead author Bogna Stawarczyk, PhD, and colleagues (Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, October 19, 2015).
Mechanical and optical properties
In this in vitro study, the researchers, from the department of prosthodontics at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich Dental School, wanted to test the mechanical and optical properties of the following:
- CAD/CAM composites: Lava Ultimate (3M ESPE), Cerasmart (GC), Shofu Block HC (Shofu), and two other CAD/CAM composites from Ivoclar Vivadent and Coltene/Whaledent
- A hybrid material (Vita Enamic, Vita Zahnfabrik)
- A leucite (IPS Empress CAD, Ivoclar Vivadent)
- A lithium disilicate glass ceramic (IPS e.max CAD, Ivoclar Vivadent)
The researchers measured each material’s three-point flexural strength, two-body wear, discoloration rate, and translucency. A qualitative analysis of wear was made using a 3D scanner and associated matching software. The discoloration rate was measured after 14 days of storage in a mixture of cress, curry, red wine, and distilled water. The translucency of the materials was measured in a spectrophotometer (400-to 700 nm wavelength). The team prepared more than 365 disk-shaped specimens, resulting in 48 specimens for each material group.
As noted, IPS e.max CAD showed the highest flexural strength (p < 0.001), followed by Lava Ultimate. Vita Enamic and IPS Empress CAD had the lowest strength scores (p < 0.001). The highest antagonist wear was observed for the tested glass ceramics and the hybrid material (p < 0.001). Glass ceramics showed lower discoloration rates than the CAD/CAM composites (p < 0.001).
The authors concluded the following:
- CAD/CAM composites showed higher flexural strengths than leucite ceramic and the hybrid material Vita Enamic, but lower ones than lithium disilicate ceramic.
- Only one CAD/CAM composite (Coltene/Whaledent) showed comparable wear properties with the tested glass ceramics and the hybrid material. The remaining CAD/CAM composites presented higher material loss than glass ceramics.
- Glass ceramics and the hybrid material showed higher human tooth antagonist wear than the CAD/CAM composites.
- Glass ceramics showed lower discoloration rate than CAD/CAM composites.
While “no clinical data regarding the clinical longevity of these materials is available, they may at least be used for medium-term restorations,” noted the authors, adding that long-term clinical studies are urgently needed.
For Further Information
More on the CAD/CAM block market in Europe can be found in the report published by iData entitled European Markets for Dental Prosthetics and CAD/CAM Devices. The market segments covered in this report include crown and bridges, CAD/CAM prosthetics, dentures, and CAD/CAM blocks.
The iData series on dental prosthetics and CAD/CAM devices covers the U.S., Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, China, Taiwan, Australia, Japan, South Korea and 15 countries in Europe encompassing Germany, France, the United Kingdom (U.K.), Italy, Spain, Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxemburg), Scandinavia (Finland, Denmark, Sweden and Norway), Portugal, Austria and Switzerland. Full reports also provide a comprehensive analysis including units sold, procedure numbers, market value, forecasts, as well as detailed competitive market shares and analysis of major players’ success strategies in each market and segment.
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